Is the French Army on the Cusp of a Transformation?

There's a significant transformation on the horizon for the under the guidance of General Pierre Schill. This overhaul is in response to a time characterized by an escalating use of force, demonstrated for instance in the Ukraine . The ultimate aim is to ensure preparedness for future engagements and to deter aggression.

General Pierre Schill has identified three core objectives for this transformation:

  • Insuring protection and resilience in mainland France and its overseas territories
  • Promoting strategic solidarity in Europe and the Middle East
  • Preventing conflict and exerting influence, particularly in Africa and the Indo-Pacific region

The transformation is structured around four key themes: “To be and to last”, “Protect”, “Act”, and “Innovate”.

To be and to last

This theme prioritizes leadership education and human resources, including a loyalty plan and the establishment of the “Terre” foundation. It also focuses on the “contact infrastructure”. There will be a special emphasis on maintaining operational condition and replenishing stocks, contributing to the economy of war.

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Protect

In order to protect, efforts will be made to partially territorialize the reserve and establish a unified headquarters for national territory. Additionally, the French Army's presence in overseas territories will be strengthened. The diffusion of a “spirit of ” targeting the younger generation is also on the cards.

Innovate

With an eye on future warfare, the Army will establish a Drone School and prioritize robotics and remotely operated ammunition. There will also be a School of Influence, two new cyber companies, four influence units, and an electronic warfare unit in each regiment. Additionally, cooperation with the “CAESAr” club will be fostered, and the “CaMo” will be delivered to Belgian land defense. Cooperation with Germany and through the MGCS project is also planned.

Act

Under the “Act” theme, considerable structural alterations are anticipated. The Army will adopt three concepts: “Partnership abroad”, “Framework nation for collective defense”, and “Army of non-circumvention”. The French Army's 1st and 3rd Divisions will each be assigned a specific task.

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The 3rd Division will be in charge of prevention and influence, likely forming operational military partnerships in the Indian Ocean and Africa. The 1st Division, on the other hand, will focus on Europe and will include the 27th Mountain Infantry Brigade, 9th Marine Infantry Brigade, 7th Armored Brigade, and the Franco-German Brigade.

The 3rd Division encapsulates the 11th Parachute Brigade, 6th Light Armored Brigade, 2nd Armored Brigade, and three other organic elements. Changes in the composition of these units are expected due to “regionalization”.

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